The line up for the first US edition of the St. Jerome's Laneway Festival has been revealed and my goodness, if this is a hint of what we can expect for next year's Australian line up, we'd be extremely happy.
Well that’s it. The last Laneway Festival of the year has come and gone. The festivals run of shows came to a sweltering sold-out climax at Perth’s Cultural precinct. Looking at the line-up (Of Monsters and Men & The Reubens in particular) it’s hardly surprising that Perth along with a number of the other dates sold out. Though despite it’s sold out status, it felt fairly quiet until the majority of the punters arrived a couple of hours into the day.
The St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival has never been a niche festival, no matter how indie or decidedly ‘hipster’ its appearance purports. Having featured acts including Florence and the Machine, Foals, Two Door Cinema Club and more over the years, Laneway has always been one of the country’s best touring festivals that has continued to grow in popularity since its debut tour. This year is my third Laneway Festival and I gathered that, since the Adelaide leg sold out so close to the date (a miracle), things were going to be big down the city’s west end.
Pictured: Bat For Lashes
As far as hardcore, alternative hip-hop goes, there is no looking past El Productio, better known as El-P, and his penchant for crafting beats that put you at risk for a broken neck. Taking over Oxford Art Factory as a Laneway Festival sideshow, El-P showed that he has both sides of the coin covered; as one of the best rapper-producers out there, the man completely dominated his set.
Winning the coveted Mercury Prize is always sure-fire way to ensure that your tours sell-out very quickly; Last year’s winners, Alt-J are no exception. As such, their late-announced Laneway sideshow was a packed frenzy of trendy folk linked together by their love of Alt J’s left-field indie-rock.
Just about everyone has a story about catching an amazing gig from some up-and-coming band that ended up being hugely popular and successful. It’s the ownership and excitement that comes with knowing them before they were "cool", a badge that all hipsters must earn and wear with aloof reserve.
Far from the laneways it originated in, the boutique St Jerome's Laneway Festival is now a three country, seven city touring juggernaut, with huge crowds and unthinkable logistics. And though it still attracts the fringe acts that gave it its idealic indie reputation in its early days, it also attracts (or, rather, predicts) bands who litter the triple j Hottest 100, proving they are as much on the pulse of the "what's hot now" mainstream as the next festival, if not moreso. With this including electronic artists like Flume (this year) and SBTRKT (last year), this also sees a much more diverse crowd coming into the grounds than one might have a few years ago. Does this mean the festival has changed? Definitely. After all, the crowd is as much of a festival as the acts and its surroundings. But does that mean the festival is any less enjoyable for a fan of the Laneways of the past? Well, let's a look...
Pictured: Bat For Lashes. Check out more Laneway bands in the Laneway Singapore Gallery!
Pictured: Alpine. Check out more Laneway bands in the Laneway Singapore Gallery!